October 19, 2009

Wow! Diebold scanners are picky about ink colors on ballots

Posted in Diebold, Elections, voting, voting machine testing, voting machines tagged , , , at 10:44 pm by bluebanshee

Yup, you read that right.  Diebold scanners are picky about which color ink is used to mark a ballot — sometimes just can not read blue ink.  Also, sometimes just can not read  marks made with number two pencil.  Everyone who has ever filled out a scantron sheet for an  SAT or GRE or any other standardized test must be scratching your head by now.

Yes, I know, I know …  the official instructions  from Diebold say to use a number two pencil or a pen with blue or black ink (just like those standardized test directions).  But you can’t believe the official stuff because it doesn’t always work. Read the rest of this entry »

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February 18, 2008

No voting machine vendor unscathed in CA

Posted in election audits, Election fraud, Elections, ES&S, voting machine certification, voting machine testing, voting machines tagged , , , at 4:35 pm by bluebanshee

ES&S is the target of the latest T2B report 

California SOS Debra Bowen has issued the latest in her studies of voting systems used in California.  This time round it is ES&S in the dock and found guilty of general incompetence in designing the software and security for its voting equipment.

More disturbing is the fact that the machines in this latest part of the Top to Bottom Review (T2B) are widely used optical scan machines that count paper ballots.  So even jurisdictions which have paper ballots and use these scanners should consider putting additional safeguards in place and instituting post-election audits.   Especially since these are the same machines that were recently decertified by the SOS in Colorado. Read the rest of this entry »

January 7, 2008

Glaring omissions in otherwise excellent NYT article on voting machines

Posted in Diebold, election audits, Elections, ES&S, Florida voting, paper ballots, politics, voting, voting machine certification, voting machine testing, voting machines tagged , , , , , at 10:24 pm by bluebanshee

“Can You Count on Voting Machines?” is the question posed by Clive Thompson in his cover article in this week’s New York Times Magazine. The answer, of course, is a resounding “No” due to flawed design, buggy software and poor quality control in the manufacture of these machines, as Thompson ably demonstrates. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/06/magazine/06Vote-t.html?_r=1&hp=&pagewanted=all&oref=slogin

Thompson’s solid article is a timely reminder on the eve of the New Hampshire Primary that the nation’s election system is still broken. The curtain was pulled back in Florida 2000 to reveal the sorry state of U.S. elections and, despite the efforts of activists and politicians, there is not as much progress as one would hope. Some states like Florida are making great strides toward transparent paper-based systems, while others like Maryland, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Virginia are still struggling to ditch paperless voting machines.

However, there are a few areas of omission that need to be filled in and a few bits of mis-information that need to be corrected. Read the rest of this entry »

December 29, 2007

CO SOS tests voting systems — certifies only Premier (Diebold)

Posted in Diebold, Elections, ES&S, voting machine certification, voting machine testing, voting machines tagged , , , , , , , at 1:00 pm by bluebanshee

Colorado SOS Michael Coffman completed court mandated testing and recertification of voting systems used in the state and issued some dramatic rulings which were immediately subject to a firestorm of controversy.

Premier (formally known as Diebold) All voting equipment submitted for recertification passed.

Sequoia The optical scan devices, Insight and 400-C, used to count paper ballots both passed, but the electronic voting machines, the Edge II and the Edge II Plus, both failed due to a variety of security risk factors, including that the system is not password protected, has exposed controls potentially giving voters unauthorized access, and lacks an audit trail to detect security violations.

Hart The optical scan devices, eScan and BallotNow, both failed because test results showed that they could not accurately count ballots. The electronic voting machine, eSlate, passed.

ES&S The optical scan devices (M 100 and the M650) both failed because of an inability to determine if the devices work correctly and an inability to complete the testing threshold of 10,000 ballots due to vendor programming errors. The electronic voting machine (iVotronic) failed because it is easily disabled by voters activating the device interface, and the system lacks an audit trail to detect security violations.

http://www.sos.state.co.us/pubs/pressrel/coffman_completes_elec_voting_equip_tests_12-17-07.html Read the rest of this entry »